Today, January 23rd 2015 Aengus ‘Gussie’ Shanahan should be celebrating his 35th birthday with his family and friends. However they lost him to Ireland’s increasing ‘Missing Persons’ list on Friday, February 11th 2000. That family and those friends have never heard from him since that night, 15 years ago now.
The Castleisland connection is that Gussie Shanahan is a nephew of the late John Shanahan, highly respected auctioneer, publican and ‘doggy’ man in this locality.
Ballymacelligott native, John shared the torment of his Limerick based brother, Bob and his family over the disappearance of their youngest born on that fateful February night in 2000.
The RTÉ 1 programme Crime Call will feature the ‘Gussie Shanahan case’ on Monday night and his tormented family will renew their hopes that they might get the call to end the anguish of not knowing what happened to him or why he disappeared without trace on that night.
Gussie’s cousin, Fr.Aquinas Duffy started the missinginireland.com website in May 2000 just a few months after Gussie’s disappearance.
“This website was setup to help find my cousin Aengus Shanahan and also to provide the facility for other Irish people to place their information there,” said Fr. Duffy at the time.
The site now carries a list of nearly 80 names and some high profile ‘cases’ like those of: Annie McCarrick, Jo Jo Dollard, Fiona Pender and Philip Cairns whose families still carry the crosses of having loved ones missing without trace.
However, there is always the hope that, at least, someone, somewhere knows something and that people don’t just disappear without trace without someone knowing about it.
It has been a long, tormenting, torturous road for all these families. In the case of the Shanahans to have to face today and another birthday and on February 11th another red letter day for a son for whom they’d go to the ends of the earth to find a scrap of information about. There must be someone out there with that vital scrap of information that can bring an end to their sense of hopelessness and years of pain.
As Gussie’s late uncle John said soon after his disappearance: “At least if we knew where he is one way or the other. It mightn’t be what we want or what we hoped for – but we’d know. It’s a terror the way it is.”
Aengus ‘Gussie’ Shanahan was last seen at 22.30pm on Friday night, February 11th 2000. He was captured on cctv leaving Coopers Bar (now Eric’s Bar) on Joseph Street, Limerick at 23.30.
He was born in 1980 and is 5ft 10 inches and walks with a slight stoop forward: eye colour is blue. He was wearing dark blue jeans with a blue top and a red, white and blue adidas jacket.
If you have any information whatsoever, you’re urged to call in Strictest of Confidence a new helpline number Tel: 085 20 921 19 or Email. email@example.com
Roxboro Garda Station: Tel 061-21 4340 or Gardai at Henry Street. Limerick at 061 21 2400. A helpline at 1890 442 552 or mobile 087 7708112. All Information provided will be treated confidentially.
The CrimeCall programme featuring the Gussie Shanahan disappearance will be broadcast on this Monday night, January 26th 2015 on RTE1 at 9.35pm. The contact details are: Tel: 1800 40 50 60 Free Text: 50123 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org